Sunday, January 18, 2015

A Few Things

I'm currently reading Doubt by Jennifer Michael Hecht, and I've noticed again that my reading pace drops off when I'm reading fairly dense non-fiction. I'm enjoying the book, but I compare its 812 (epub edition) pages which I've been reading for what seems like forever to the three or so days it takes me to read a roughly 350 page fiction book. Anyway, I am enjoying the book, it's an interesting look at skeptics and doubters throughout history, but it's not necessarily about atheism, though that is a focus. There is also discussion of how doubt led to changes within religion. It's an interesting position to discuss how doubt defined early Christianity. The connection is overt in the mythology concerning Jesus's walking on water and Peter failing to follow him because of his doubt. But later the book discusses St. Augustine struggling with his own doubt, finding it to be hindering his faith and allowing him to remain fixated on sex rather than his god.
There is discussion of Eastern doubt from India to Japan with China between, but little else for the rest of Asia and nothing from Africa nor the pre-Columbian Americas. While I'm sure that there was something going on in those regions, I wonder if this absence is due to the usual Western-centric view or because of a lack of accessible and extant historical documentation as everything discussed in this book is backed up with extensive source footnotes.
The book follows along chronologically and I'm currently in the second half of the Nineteenth Century, and currently in the United States leaving me around one-hundred fifty-ish pages of content before the footnotes begin. In other words, it'll still be a few days before I finish and can move on to the next book.
In other worlds within my life I've long enjoyed crappy sci-fi and fantasy B-movies from the 80s and 90s, so I think I'm going to start posting up my thoughts here as I watch them. Before that I'm going to work my way through Starhunter. I caught a glimpse and watched an episode a while ago on Amazon before they lost the broadcast rights and no one else had them. Anyway, I got the first season collection through and I'll be watching and posting thoughts on the series one episode at a time. The first few episodes are out of order so I'll be making sure that I watch in the proper broadcast order. My Internet searches regarding the show came up with very little so I'm watching it with new eyes, which in this day and age is a weird feeling.

No comments: